Jun. 08, 2017 (June 2017) The Kommunal municipal services union has signed five agreements with municipal companies represented by the KFS employers' organisation. The agreements cover care, consultancies, real estate and business and museums and archaeological activities. They follow the main trend of a 6.5% pay increase spread over three years with the care agreement including additional increases for nurses, as did the main municipal agreement.
Jun. 08, 2017 (June 2017) Public sector workers get a 6% pay rise this year and the same again next year, if the current economic climate is maintained. This agreement was promoted by the KOZ confederation and picked up by the ETUC Pay Rise campaign which also reported on the push for a higher minimum wage in the country.
Jun. 08, 2017 (June 2017) The NSF nurses' union is supporting a strike of its members at the Cancer Society. The union wants to defend its members' pay and conditions and the right to strike in the face of changes introduced by the Cancer Society when it switched its membership to the NHO employers' organisation. The NSF argues that not only does this mean a worsening of the pay and conditions of nurses but gives the Society the right to unilaterally terminate an agreement. The strike is getting widespread support from trade unions and other bodies, including pensioner organisations. EPSU sent a message of support when it met a delegation of the NSF on 14-15 June.
Jun. 08, 2017 (June 2017) Details are emerging of the latest stage in negotiations between public sector unions and the government as they begin to unwind the austerity pay arrangements that saw pay cut and frozen and workers paying a pensions levy. The latest proposals are for a three-year deal running from 1 January 2018 to 31 December 2020. There will be several pay increases over the period plus changes to the salary thresholds for the pensions levy. If agreed the deal would mean, for example, that a worker on EUR 30000 or less would be 7.4% better off by 2020.
Jun. 06, 2017
A new briefing paper of Corporate Europe on the Creeping Privatisation of Health Care in the European Union provides detailed insight in the political and market mechanisms that increase health inequalities and lead to privatization of basic care.
May. 30, 2017
On 16 and 17 May Ukrainian trade unions, ILO, ITUC, PERC and EPSU organised a workshop to exchange information on the health care reforms recently implemented or planned in Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova.
May. 26, 2017 (May 2017) The Sanitas health union says it will continue to campaign and mobilise in order to ensure that new legislation creates pay equity for all workers in the health and social services sectors. In its latest form the legislation fails to take account of a series of amendments submitted by the union. Sanitas says the process of consultation appears to have been for show only. The union will consider what further action to take should the legislation fail to incorporate the key changes on pay.
May. 25, 2017 (May 2017) The FOA public services union has called on MPs to reject the continuing demand on local government and health to deliver a 2% productivity increase each year. Effectively in force since 2003, it means that workers in the sector deliver 49% more services with the same staff. The union argues that there is a limit to what can be done and that services cannot be permanently streamlined without posing a threat to quality. The union points out that while health workers have been delivering a 2.4% productivity increase each year the private sector has managed only 1%.
May. 25, 2017 (May 2017) The ADEDY public sector confederation expressed its thanks to the thousands of workers who joined the general strike and rallies on 17 May. The strike was to express opposition to further austrity measures being put forward as part of the bail-out package being negotiated between the government and the European creditors and International Monetary Fund. The strike was jointly called by the GSEE private sector confederation and supported by the International Trade Union Confederation.
May. 25, 2017 (May 2017) The FNV and NU'91 trade unions have negotiated a new collective agreement covering 80000 workers in the mental health care sector. The agreement runs from 1 March 2017 to 1 July 2019 and includes a 4% pay increase - 1.65% this year and 1.88% next year with an extra 0.25% coming in end-of-year bonuses. The agreement also includes measures to address problems of overwork and long working hours with a checklist to assess the health impact and sustainability of workers' rosters. There are also measures to improve the provision and scope of training.
May. 25, 2017 (May 2017) The UNISON public services union warns of a recruitment crisis in public services if public sector pay restraint is continued. UNISON quotes a new report from the independent Insitute of Fiscal Studies which say that if public sector pay continues to fall compared to pay in the private sector, the public sector will struggle to recruit and retain the workers it needs to deliver public services, and the quality of those services will therefore be at risk.
May. 25, 2017 (May 2017) Public service trade unions have had a series of meetings with the new minister of public accounts, Gérald Darminin, with some already unhappy that his remit is not broad responsibility for the public services. The unions have a number of major concerns including the need for a pay rise, particularly for the lowest paid occupations and rejection of the plans to cut 120000 civil service posts. Pensions and other working conditions were also raised in the meetings with the minister indicating that joint meetings with the unions would take place later in the year.
May. 24, 2017 (May 2017) Two members of ver.di with the support of their union and the DGB confederation have won an important ruling in the European Court of Justice that protects the link between their pay and conditions and the public sector collective agreement. The two hospital employees were part of a transfer to a private company in 1997 but were then transferred again when the Asklepios company won the contract. Asklepios refused to maintain the link with the public sector collective agreement arguing that it was not party to the original negotiations. The European Court decided in favour of the workers because it said that the rules were specific to them to protect their rights and were not part of a collective agreement.
May. 23, 2017
This year’s Country Specific Recommendations represent another missed opportunity to give the European economy a boost with a significant increase in public investment.